College is expensive and it seems that the costs only continue to increase. This is a point of financial stress for many of us with children in elementary school but the good news is that we still have many years to save.


One popular college savings avenue is a state-sponsored 529 plan. If you’re in the market for a 529 then you’re in luck, Morningstar just released its list of the Best 529 College-Savings Plans for 2012.


Morningstar’s list includes “27 plans that are likely to outperform their peers on a risk-adjusted basis over a full market cycle. These plans earned Gold, Silver, or Bronze Morningstar Analyst Ratings, which are forward-looking, qualitative ratings.” Source: Morningstar


Four of the 27 plans earned a gold rating: Alaska’s T. Rowe Price College Savings Plan, the Maryland College Investment Plan, the Utah Educational Savings Plan and Nevada’s Vanguard 529 College Savings Plan.


An additional four 529 plans earned a silver rating: Arkansas’ iShares 529 Plan, the Michigan Education Savings Program, Ohio’s CollegeAdvantage 529 Savings Plan and Virginia’s CollegeAmerica program.


Learn more about the 27 plans and what each of the ratings mean by reading the entire Morningstar Best 529 College-Savings Plans for 2012 announcement.

Morningstar's Best 529 Plans for 2012
Four state-sponsored 529 plans earn a Morningstar gold rating.